Tuesday, July 14, 2015

CD Review: Various Artists' 'Afro-Caribbean Party'

Various Artists
Afro-Caribbean Party

Putumayo releases another gem of a recording and this time they celebrate the music of Afro-Caribbean lands for their aptly-titled, Afro-Caribbean Party. The new album contains a cast of ten different musicians hailing from Martinique, Jamaica, Haiti, and Cuba. You will hear the Cape Verde and New Orleans jazz-inspired medley of Kali, rolling reggae melodies by Clinton Fearon, jazzy ska by Ska Cubano and Wesli, Afro-Latin dance by Michel Blaise, Latin jazz from Asere, Mandingo reggae with Famara, island rhythms from Jan Sebon and Kazak International, Afro-Latin jazz and folk with a classic tone by Chispa Labori, and mostly instrumental Bahamian folk music from Fred Ferguson & Grafitti. The diverse musical line-up showcases a good overview of typical Afro-Caribbean examples, but it is in no way complete or covers strictly traditional music from the above-mentioned regions. Still, it is a vibrant and dance-worthy album that runs a little short (38:42), but it makes up for it with repeated listens. Plus, a refreshing Caribbean punch recipe is included. ~ Matthew Forss

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